Sunday, August 29, 2010

Tomb of Cao Cao: The Battle Continues - It's Fake, Some Say...

This is getting really good :) Prior posts on Cao Cao's tomb:

Saturday, June 12, 2010
Emerald "Pearl" Found in Cao Cao's Mouth?

Sunday, May 23, 2010
Excavation of Cao Xiu's Tomb, Henan Province, China [Cao Xiu, adopted son of Cao Cao]

Tuesday, February 2, 2010
China's Battle of the Generals Heats Up with Mega Tourist Bucks at Stake

Sunday, January 31, 2010
Follow-up: Cao Cao had 72 fake tombs!

Wednesday, December 30, 2009
Tomb of Cao Cao Unearthed in China: Follow-Up

Sunday, December 27, 2009
Tomb of Cao Cao Unearthed in China

From People's Daily Online
Cao Cao's tomb: Experts reveal that findings and artifacts are fake
09:00, August 24, 2010

Artificial planning and fake artifacts were part of the discovery and excavation of a supposed ancient tomb claiming to belong to Cao Cao, a warlord in the Three Kingdoms period (220-280), a group of experts and scholars announced over the weekend.

The discovery and excavation of the tomb was listed as a Top Ten Archaeology Achievement in 2009 by the State Administration of Cultural Heritage.

A total of 23 experts and scholars from across the country presented evidence at the National High-Level Forum on Culture of the Three Kingdoms Period held in Suzhou, Jiangsu Province, to prove that the tomb was a fake.

According to epigrapher Li Luping, director of the Committee of Calligraphy and Appraisal of Jiangsu Province, the epitaph of Lu Qian, which directly indicates the specific location of the tomb of Cao Cao, is the source of the forgery.

Li discovered that the character 年(year) on the epitaph was written in almost the same style as is in modern times, quite different to the more square style in use at the time in history.

"After over thousands of years of erosion, how come there is residue of the cave on the stone steles from Cao Cao's tomb?" Li said. "Such a cheap counterfeit takes at most three years, if not three days."

Lin Kuicheng, director of the Calligraphy and Painting Committee of Kaifeng Federation of Literature and Art Circle, Henan Province, said that the title Wei Wu King carved on the stele of Cao Cao's supposed tomb was not accurate or appropriate.

"Wei King was his title when he was alive and Wu King is his title after his death," Lin explained. "Under ancient customs, there is no way the two titles would have been permitted to be put together."

Zhang Guo'an, an expert on the Wei Jin period (220-420) from Beijing Normal University, said that by studying the changes in the forms and systems of ancient tombs, he found that the newly-unearthed tomb was the same scale as the tomb of Cao Xiu, one of Cao Cao sons, which is very unlikely as the tombs of a father and son would not be the same.

The ancient tomb complex was unearthed in December. It included three ancient corpses, one man and two women. The man died in his 60s, the same age as Cao Cao when he died.

Source: Global Times(By Jiang Wanjuan)
Obviously given the scale of the tomb itself, it cannot be fake and taken only 3 years to construct - as if such a massive work could have been undertaken in secret in over-crowded China in any event.  Also, there is the matter of the three corpses recovered from the tomb, along with lots of artifacts that all seem to be legitimate.

I believe what some experts are asserting is that the identification of the tomb as Cao Cao's is based on faked elements somehow planted into the tomb and due to the work of unknown perpetrators - how that could have been done no one seems to be addressing.  Stay tuned. 

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